The Lunar New Year is upon us on January 22nd, 2023. As such, here are five facts you need to know about this event.
1. The Lunar New Year Goes By Several Names
The Lunar New Year is also known as the Chinese New Year because the event is based on a calendar that was originally developed in China. However, the Chinese New Year isn’t just observed in China. Other countries throughout Asia, such as North and South Korea and Vietnam, also celebrate but call it the Lunar New Year. And in China, people refer to their new year as “The Spring Festival” or chunjie (春节).
2. The Lunar New Year Is A Celebration Of Fresh Starts
Despite the event falling during the winter, the Lunar New Year is a goodbye to the cold and an official welcome to the spring. The Lunar New Year represents the planting and harvests the warmer months makes possible (and the new beginnings that arrive as well).
3. The Lunar New Year Lasts Around 15 Days
The Lunar New Year is actually observed for around 15 days (or more). As well, the Lunar New Year doesn’t occur on a set date each year but rather a range between January 20th to February 20th. In 2023, The Lunar New Year is on January 22nd. However, preparations for it began on January 15th with the creations of festive cakes and puddings.
4. 2023 Is The Year Of The Rabbit
The Lunar New Year marks the transition of one animal of the Chinese zodiac to the next. 2022 was the Year of the Tiger while 2023 will be the Year of the Rabbit. While the Western zodiac cycles its 12 signs throughout one year, The Chinese zodiac is based on a repeating 12-year cycle of animal signs, meaning each zodiac season lasts one year.
The animals of the Chinese zodiac are: Rat, Ox, Tiger, Rabbit, Dragon, Snake, Horse, Goat, Monkey, Rooster, Dog, and Pig. Each of these animals have its own set of characteristics.
The Rabbit is the fourth animal of the Chinese zodiac. The Rabbit is kind and quiet, which can lead some to believe that this makes them weak. However, this isn’t a proper estimation, as the Rabbit is truly incredibly strong and persistent.
Those born in the Year of the Rabbit should expect disruption and instability throughout 2023.
5. The Biggest Event Of The Lunar New Year Is The Lantern Festival
The last day of the Lunar New Year in 2023 will be on February 5th and is marked by the Lantern Festival. The Lantern Festival is celebrated through huge lantern displays and fairs.
In ancient Chinese society, The Lantern Festival used to be the sole day of the year that girls could go out to admire the lanterns (and meet boys). As such, The Lantern Festival is also known as Chinese Valentine’s Day.